Sound field reconstruction using acousto-optic tomography

Antoni Torras Rosell, Salvador Barrera Figueroa, Finn Jacobsen

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When sound propagates through a medium, it results in pressure fluctuations that change the instantaneous density of the medium. Under such circumstances, the refractive index that characterizes the propagation of light is not constant, but influenced by the acoustic field. This kind of interaction is known as the acousto-optic effect. The formulation of this physical phenomenon into a mathematical problem can be described in terms of the Radon transform, which makes it possible to reconstruct an arbitrary sound field using tomography. The present work derives the fundamental equations governing the acousto-optic effect in air, and demonstrates that it can be measured with a laser Doppler vibrometer in the audible frequency range. The tomographic reconstruction is tested by means of computer simulations and measurements. The main features observed in the simulations are also recognized in the experimental results. The effectiveness of the tomographic reconstruction is further confirmed with representations of the very same sound field measured with a traditional microphone array.
Original languageEnglish
JournalAcoustical Society of America. Journal
Issue number5
Pages (from-to)3786-3793
Publication statusPublished - 2012


  • Acoustic field
  • Acoustic tomography
  • Acoustic variables measurement
  • Acoustic wave propagation
  • Acousto-optical effects
  • Measurement by laser beam
  • Microphone arrays
  • Radon transforms
  • Vibration measurement


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